Sennheiser’s MKE 200 on-camera microphone is the perfect home videoconferencing upgrade – TechCrunch
Sennheiser just released a new directional microphone for the camera. The compact MKE 200 ($ 99.95) offers a lot of convenience and performance in a small, portable package – one that’s great for vlogging anywhere once it’s a viable option again, and one that is a fantastic but affordable upgrade for your video conferencing setup in the meantime Home offers.
The MKE 200 is a supercardioid microphone that is attached directly to the hot shoe cover of a camera. Unlike most on-camera shotgun microphones, it is a short, blunt affair that is just under three inches long and isn’t a long tube. It’s light and small, and has both a built-in windshield and a shock mount for ultimate portability.
On the front of the MKE 200 there is a 3.5 mm audio connection with a thread, which can be used to make secure connections to the microphone input of your camera. In the box, Sennheiser has carefully integrated both TRS and TRRS cables, which means it will work great with just about every DSLR, mirrorless camera, or even smartphone on the market without the need for additional cables.
The MKE 200 gets all of the power it needs from this single cable connection, so you don’t have to worry about batteries or charging. It also includes a fluffy windshield cover to minimize wind noise when taking photos outdoors and a soft carrying case for transportation.
Design and performance
The design of the MKE 200 is simple and in this case simply very good. Thanks to its compact profile and robust construction, it is both light and very durable. Combined with the relatively low cost, this is a great mic that you can throw in a bag without much thought – a perfect kit to hit the road with a lightweight rig, or to top even the lightest cameras if you have one better use camera than your built-in webcam for your home zoom and video setup.
The batteryless single cable of the MKE 200 also means that you really don’t have to worry about anything other than attaching and connecting it to the cold shoe holder. Sennheiser has added this simplicity well to its performance – right away it sounds pretty good on mine Sony A6400 with the camera’s default audio settings.
The 3.5mm stereo threaded connector is definitely not strictly necessary – but it’s the kind of quality detail that has earned Sennheiser its stellar reputation. The locking thread means you have one point fewer errors – yes, the cable can still accidentally get caught on something and pop out of the camera side, but it won’t budge from the microphone.
The supplied fuzzy windshield from Sennheiser is another useful addition. It’s like a sock that runs all over the microphone body and eliminates wind noise well. This is something that other microphone manufacturers may offer as an accessory sold separately. So it’s great when it’s under $ 100 on the price tag.
The Sennheiser MKE 200 is a great example of a company that reads the room and delivers a product that is perfectly tailored to the needs of a wide category of its customers. At under $ 100, it’s a great and almost impromptu addition to almost any amateur toolkit. It may not have the range or maximum audio quality of a more expensive dedicated on-camera shotgun microphone, but it has enough power for any vlogging or close-range interviewing application and is especially good for starting as it is the perfect companion to a compact mirrorless or DSLR camera that you may use as a webcam for your remote video conferencing, training, and event needs.